School chief John Barge wasted no time on his pledge to revisit the state’s new math.
The question I have is whether this makes the situation even more complicated for transfer students — one of the concerns originally — as students often move from one system to another within the same state. Now, you could have adjacent Georgia systems teaching a different math program. And will we be paying for two sets of tests now?
Is this the best solution?
According to the AJC:
State Superintendent John Barge, responding to the ire of parents and the governors’ concerns about the graduation rate, introduced a plan Thursday to allow local school districts to choose how they will teach math giving students the same rigor, but different approaches to learning concepts.
The plan allows districts to teach math in the traditional way and do away with the current integrated Math I, Math II and Math III courses, accelerated classes which have been criticized for being too fast-paced resulting in the failure of about 80,000 students statewide on final exams in math last May.
Or districts can choose to offer both traditional and integrated math consecutively. They’d also have the option of continuing as is with the challenging integrated approach.
Students now in grades 9-12 would still be required to take integrated math through graduation. The integrated path, introduced under the leadership of former Superintendent Kathy Cox, was designed to expose students to advanced content sooner than under the old model so that they will be able to compete with their peers nationwide for college entry.
“We have seen through practice that some students are having trouble with an integrated delivery system,” said Barge. “Some of them don’t feel like they have the time that they need to truly master the concepts before they move on to another one.”
As a result students are falling behind and failing.
“What we are seeing in the field is far too many students who are in 10th and 11th grade that are already off track for graduation because they fail to pass Math I and Math II,” Barge said.
–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog